Web 2.0 sites are the next generation of site development, and provide a significant number of improvements to older designed sites. However, some web developers are stuck in the old school mentality of sharing information the simple way while others make the jump to the interactive information sharing that web 2.0 provides.
Distinct Characteristics of Web 2.0 Sites
While arguments against 2.0 sites rise, the benefits of operating a web 2.0 site considerably outweigh any risk associated. That said, there are significant enhancements to note with regard to web 2.0:
- Interactive Information Sharing — Instead of maintaining a passive informational site for users, web 2.0 sites allow users to add to and edit content available to other browsers. Two great examples of this are the comment section of blogs and the open-content philosophies of forums.
- Interoperability — The bottom line here is that in web 1.0 there is a significant amount (if not every website out there) only have intraoperability. Web 2.0 allows various software to communicate with one another which greatly enhances the capabilities of sites.
- User-Centered Design — While most site developers try to design sites that are aesthetically pleasing, web 2.0 developers utilize UCD (User-Centered Design) to problem solve how your users will use your website. In general, the idea behind UCD is to think like a consumer and deliver that content efficiently and effectively (of course, while incorporating the interactivity and interoperability).
- Collaboration — Allowing the users to link up with other web 2.0 sites (and social media sites) is a significant enhancement with web 2.0 sites. This somewhat goes hand-in-hand with interactivity and is another form of user-generated content which is a distinct feature of web 2.0.
Top Web 2.0 Sites
With thousands of sites out there on the world wide web, there are a few web 2.0 sites that are renowned for their designs. The top seven 2.0 sites are:
- YouTube — Providing everything from interactivity, user-generated content, interoperability, and overall UCD YouTube truly is one of the most well known web 2.0 sites available.
- Wikipedia — Not many people outside of the world wide web arena understand that a good majority (if not all) of the content provided for Wikipedia is generated by users. It is a great web 2.0 site that is truly user centered and is an outstanding example of collaboration as well.
- Craigslist — While the overall design is rudimentary, Craigslist has become one of the greatest web 2.0 sites to date. All of the content is user-generated, and the interactivity is phenomenal.
- Twitter — Need I say more? I truly hope that you have all discovered Twitter at this point and are readily taking advantage of the unbelievable potential this site has with social networking. If you haven’t, I highly suggest you take a look at a few of our posts about the site and take a venture to start your tweeting today.
- WordPress — One of the largest open-source sites in existence, WordPress has an incredible interactivity feature with almost all content being user-generated. Truly a great example of web 2.0 at its best.
- IMDB — The internet movie database is one of the leading web 2.0 sites because of the user-generated content.
- flickr — Similar to YouTube, flickr allows users to submit content (photos) as well as collaborate with other social networking (and web 2.0) sites. It also provides the interoperability between software (and sites).
Overall, web 2.0 sites are here to stay and will only improve as the development of web 3.0 sites are already starting. My best suggestion to you would be to talk with your web development company (or your IMPACT team for that matter), and discuss the possibilities of including web 2.0 features into your current site or rehabilitating your site to a full 2.0 version. As always, if you have questions or want to leave some feedback please feel free in the comment section below!
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